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Farewell, Cerato! 2025 Kia K4 sedan officially revealed but when is the Toyota Corolla, Hyundai i30 and Mazda 3 rival coming to Australia?

The new Cerato adopts Kia's current design philosophy found on the EV9.

Farewell, Kia Cerato and hello, K4!

That's the name of the new small sedan model that will replace the long-running Cerato moniker in Australia, likely before the end of this year.

There is no mention of Cerato in the media release, and it has been previously confirmed by senior Kia management that the next-gen model - also dubbed K3 in some markets - will adopt the K4 name.

Kia is yet to reveal any details about the powertrain, but it's highly likely that it will be offered with a petrol engine, maybe the tried and true 2.0-litre naturally aspirated unit from the current model, but the 1.6-litre petrol-electric hybrid found in its Hyundai i30 sedan cousin is a distinct possibility.

That powertrain delivers 104kW and 265Nm and it drives the front wheels via a six-speed dual-clutch transmission.

Kia Australia is remaining quiet on the K4's local future, saying that further details will be released in due course.

However, CarsGuide understands that the K4 is locked in for an Australian debut later before the end of 2024.

Kia is yet to reveal any details about the powertrain, but it’s highly likely that it will be offered with a petrol engine.

A proptype of the car has been spotted testing in Australia, which suggests that not only is it coming here, but it will almost certainly benefit from Kia's local ride and handling program that has been in place for some time now.

The purpose of the program is to ensure as many models as possible under the Kia banner have suspension and steering tunes that are better suited to Australia's diverse road network.

In terms of design, the K4 adopts Kia's 'Opposites United' design philosophy that can be seen on models like the EV9 and upcoming EV5, as well as the recently updated Sorento.

It sits low at the front like the updated Hyundai i30 sedan does, but it now features the signature vertical headlights integrated into horizontal DRLs, all surrounding a slimmer grille.

Kia Australia is remaining quiet on the K4’s local future, saying that further details will be released in due course.

It has a fastback-like silhouette and looks almost as though it could be a liftback, in fact there are shades of the sadly now discontinued Kia Stinger in how it looks. This is emphasised by the chunky closed off D-pillar element, and very chunky shoulder line.

Inside the K4 has a very 'modern Kia' look to it with the dual integrated digital screens encompassing instruments and multimedia, horizontal lines running the width of the dash and a new two-spoke steering wheel design.

While there are some buttons. Kia says it has kept them to a minimum. It has also added some new interior material colours, including Medium Gray, Slate Green, Canyon Brown, and Onyx Black.

The new K4 is also expected to take a big step up over the outgoing Cerato when it comes to overall refinement, which is clear in the more sophisticated interior design and setup.

Inside the K4 has a very ‘modern Kia’ look to it.

There are reports that a hatchback will follow the sedan's debut at this month's New York motor show, but it's unclear when this will be revealed.

Other reports have suggested that the K4 will be built in Mexico, rather than South Korea for the Australian market, but that's yet to be confirmed.

The biggest sedan rivals for the K4 will be the related Hyundai i30, the top-selling passenger car in Australia, the Toyota Corolla, as well as the Mazda3 and the MG5.

Keep an eye on as more details of the Australia-bound Kia K4 come to light.

Tim Nicholson
Managing Editor
Calling out the make and model of every single car he saw as a toddler might have challenged his parents’ patience, but it was clearly a starting point for Tim Nicholson’s journey into automotive journalism. Tim launched the program, Fender Bender, on community radio station JOY 94.9 during completion of his Master of Arts (Media and Communications). This led to an entry role at industry publication GoAuto, before eventually taking the role of Managing Editor. A stint as RACV’s Motoring Editor – including being an Australia’s Best Cars judge – provided a different perspective to automotive media, before leading him to CarsGuide where he started as a Contributing Journalist in September 2021, and transitioned to Senior Editor in April 2022, before becoming Managing Editor in December 2022.
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